Provide a 5 pages analysis while answering the following question: The Effect of Light and Moisture on Distribution of Woodlice. Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide. An abstract is required. Woodlice show an innate behavioral response in moving towards sources of moisture and away from light sources (Allott, 2001). This indicates that both of these factors are important in the decisions that woodlice make concerning their habitats.
This study focuses on two aspects of the environment in which woodlice inhabit, these are light and moisture level. These two effects work in combination with one another, as the dampness help woodlice to breathe, while the darkness prevents them from drying out. It was hoped that it could be determined which of these effects was predominant or whether they were both equally important. The aim of this study is to investigate the way in which light and moisture affect the way that woodlice distribute themselves and their preferences for environments. To do this, the variables of moisture and light intensity were modified independently to produce a total of four distinct environments. These environments were damp-dark, damp-light, dry-dark, and dry-light. It was hypothesized that woodlice would preferentially move towards areas that were dark and moist, and away from those that were light and dry. This would result in an increased concentration of woodlice in the former areas, and few in the latter.
For this study, the dependent variable was the location of the woodlice following the five-minute adjustment period. The independent variable was the condition of the environment, which was determined by the modification of two separate variables, light and heat. Each of these variables was present in a dichotomy, light or dark and damp or dry, there were no intermediate variables.
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Eight woodlice were placed in an experimental container that contained an intermediate level of moisture and light. The light and moisture levels in the container were then modified to produce four quadrants each with different environmental conditions (Figure 1). After five minutes, the number of woodlice present in each quadrant was counted and noted. If a woodlouse settled on the boundary between two quadrants, it was scored as being in the area where its head was. The experiment was repeated four times, each time using a different set of woodlice to reduce the effect of preferences specific to individual woodlice.